CSS on contract to NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management is looking for a management liaison (also called technical program officer) to support the implementation of two NOAA programs in the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI): the Coral Reef Conservation Program (Coral Program) and the National Coastal Zone Management Program. The staff member will be employed by CSS, who is under contract with NOAA Office for Coastal Management’s (OCM) and NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program. In support of the Coral Program, the liaison will deliver regionally relevant coral conservation services to USVI and its partners. The liaison will also support the implementation of USVI’s coastal management program approved by NOAA under the Coastal Zone Management Act. For both roles, the liaison will provide place-based and regional technical assistance related to coastal management and coral conservation. The position will be located on St. Croix, USVI.
Core responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following:
Serve as the NOAA Coral Reef Management Liaison to the U.S. Virgin Islands:
- Provide management assistance to USVI’s coral reef management program to maintain programs and meet all program requirements
- Provide technical assistance in the areas of coral reef conservation, planning, and management; disease response; restoration ecology; climate change adaptation and planning; marine protected area implementation; and watershed management.
- Coordinate with jurisdiction coral reef point of contact (POC) and other appropriate agencies and coral reef practitioners on NOAA Coral Program activities in the region.
- Support the USVI Coral Reef POC and Territorial Coral Reef Coordinator to update coral reef management priorities for the USVI, support the implementation of the identified priorities, and communicate those priorities to NOAA CRCP leadership and other relevant programs within NOAA working with the CRCP.
- Work closely with NOAA federal partners to provide support for post-disaster assessment, triage, and recovery work, including interactions with FEMA and DOI to amass information for Stafford Act policy considerations for corals. Provide coordination support and technical assistance for the USVI’s efforts to track and respond to the spread of Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease in the Territory.
- Coordinate with federal partners in the development and implementation of initiatives in priority areas that are consistent with Coral Program’s Strategic Plan.
- Communicate regularly and sufficiently with NOAA CRCP and OCM leadership and involved staff to ensure there is a clear understanding of areas of major time investment, priority projects, partner needs, and any issues or circumstances that may affect NOAA CRCP and OCM efforts to conserve coral reef resources in the USVI.
- Support annual and triennial Coral Program planning processes, including: fielding questions from, and coordinating calls with, potential principal investigators and local partners; conducting technical reviews of proposals; and providing implementation support to awarded projects.
- Support development and implementation of initiatives in the USVI that support the NOAA CRCP Strategic Plan, local action strategies, and other identified strategic priorities for coral reef management and conservation in the USVI.
- Provide support for efforts to develop and manage marine protected areas and build management capacity, when appropriate.
- Conduct site visits or fieldwork to assist or assess Coral Program activities.
- Coordinate with USVI and NOAA’s federal program officer to negotiate, process, amend, and monitor the cooperative funding agreements; and provide technical reviews of other Coral Program funding grants and agreements.
- Provide guidance to USVI on their responsibility to ensure documentation on all coral reef projects, including permits; completion of financial requirements and environmental compliance; and adequate monitoring of ongoing coral reef management and restoration projects is realized.
- Assist with the development of the NOAA CRCP Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement and programmatic consultations by providing information on the types of activities NOAA CRCP has funded in the USVI in the past and is likely to fund in the future, and support additional environmental compliance requirements as needed for USVI-based activities.
- Provide information to outreach and communications staff for the development locally-tailored coral reef outreach and education materials.
- Provide support for National Coral Reef Management Fellowship Program and for the Fellow that is placed in the USVI to facilitate their integration into the USVI coral reef conservation community and inform and support the development and effective implementation of their work plan.
- Work closely with NOAA CRCP Fisheries Liaison for the USVI (placed with the NOAA Fisheries Southeast Regional Office) to ensure effective coordination of CRCP-funded efforts in the USVI.
Serve as the NOAA Coastal Zone Management Liaison to the U.S. Virgin Islands:
- Provide support and assistance to USVI’s implementation of its coastal zone management program approved under the Coastal Zone Management Act.
- Coordinate with USVI and NOAA’s federal program officer to negotiate, process, amend, and monitor cooperative agreements and grants; provide technical reviews for other proposals as necessary.
- Support USVI in the implementation of Coastal Zone Management Program activities, including: review and analysis of proposed program policy changes; program evaluations required under the CZMA; and the development, review and approval of five-year assessments and strategies.
- Provide subject matter expertise and regional coordination support.
- Identify USVI’s coastal management program highlights and other opportunities to communicate partner success stories.
- Identify and facilitate programmatic synergies across the Coral and Coastal Zone Management programs to enhance execution and results, and/or identify joint projects.